Diplomatic Briefing

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Newsline: Chinese diplomat tweets that South Korea should preserve missile-defense status quo

South Korea must “act prudently” and preserve the status quo rather than deploy a second U.S.-made missile defense system, a Chinese diplomat said on Twitter. The United States, not South Korea, has a “malicious intention to deliberately undermine” Beijing’s security by deploying another Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, system in South Korea, Liu Xiaoming, China’s special envoy to the two Koreas, said in a tweet. (https://www.stripes.com/theaters/asia_pacific/2022-07-28/south-korea-missile-defense-china-6793048.html) South Korea’s government has long accused China of retaliating against South Korea for allowing the U.S. to deploy the first THAAD battery in 2017. Economic boycotts against South Korean businesses in 2017 racked up $7 billion in losses, according to an estimate from South Korean lawmakers. The U.S. installed the $800 million missile defense battery at a South Korean military base in Seongju, roughly 130 miles south of Seoul. The battery’s sole purpose was to defend South Korea from North Korea’s provocations, according to a U.S. Forces Korea statement.

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